Black Artists Contemporary Cultural Experience (BACCE) was born out of the Sugar Shack Performance Gallery & Cultural Center, a groundbreaking artist run Black Art space in San Francisco’s so-called Lower Haight.
Founded by Sugar Shack theater artists, Edris Cooper, the late great Lester Jones and Shirley Smallwood.
BACCE has been producing new plays since 1993, beginning with a co-production with Theatre Rhinoceros of local poet and playwright, Wayne Corbitt’s Crying Holy at the 16th Street location in San Francisco. This was followed by two one-acts by Pearl Cleage, Chain and Late Bus to Mecca, starring Edris Cooper and June Lomena in the Theatre Rhino basement. The company took up a short residency at Intersection For the Arts and enjoyed two full productions – On The Hills of Black America, seven short plays by Keith Josef Adkins, directed by Co-Artistic Directors, Edris Cooper-Anifowose and Lester Jones with guest director, Bob Devin Jones and Hollis Mugley’s Only Wish, as well as Edris Cooper’s first solo productions, Political Gossip and Adventures of A Black Girl In Search of Academic Clarity and Inclusion The production featured actors Peter Macon, Rico Anderson, Edris Cooper-Anifowose, Marijo Joseph, Tanya Mayo and SF Mime Troupe veteran Michael Carreiro. In 2002, BACCE moved into a space at the African American Art & Culture Complex and produced Robert Alexander’s Will He Bop, Will He Drop? After a hiatus of 10 years, Edris & Lester returned to BACCE to revive and support new artists. This year, 2013, BACCE has produced the World Premiere of Edris’ solo performance, Adventures Of a Black Girl: Traveling While Black and In A Daughter’s Eyes by Fresno native, A. Zell Williams.